Archbishop Timothy Broglio, of the Archdiocese for the United States Military Services, was elected head of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) on Tuesday, November 15th, The National Catholic Register reported.
Broglio was elected with 138 votes (out of 237) and exemplifies the conservative cause among the Catholic bishops in the U.S. His mandate will last three years. Broglio was predicted to be the likely candidate after he was nearly elected as vice president of the USCCB in 2019.
Archbishop Broglio was hailed as a champion of religious liberty by many, as he welcomed the conscience-based objections against the mandatory COVID-19 vaccine for members of the military in October 2021. He also opposed the repeal of the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy—of the Clinton administration—in the U.S. military (in force from 1993 to 2011), a policy that discouraged soldiers’ public declarations of sexual orientation.
“There is an agenda to force everyone to accept as normal and positive behavior that is contrary to the moral norms of many religions, including the Catholic Church,” he explained in a statement published by CNA. He pointed out that “teaching objective moral precepts,” a major component of public service provided by Catholic clergy, is often misinterpreted as “intolerance,” when, in practice, they protect “freedom of religion” from having to compromise to secular demands.
During Donald Trump’s presidency, he supported the administration’s ban on transgender soldiers in the U.S. military. He has also voiced his opinion that one of the roots of the sexual abuse crisis by clergy in the U.S. has direct links to homosexuality. He expressly denounced as “naïve” those who denied a link between homosexuality and sexual abuse by clergy.
Broglio has also taken a strong stance against abortion and participated multiple times in the March for Life in Washington. At a Vigil for Life celebration, he affirmed “the dignity of every human person from conception to natural death.”
Broglio cherishes his service to military personnel and called it “very enriching and rewarding.” He did not fail to point out that the military “remains the largest single source of vocations to the priesthood in the United States.”
During his tenure, several significant meetings will occur: the first session of the XVI Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops in Rome, October 4th through the 29th, 2023; the National Eucharistic Congress in Indianapolis, June of 2024; the synod’s concluding session in October 2024, and the U.S. presidential election, also in 2024.
Over the course of his career, Archbishop Broglio served as Apostolic Nuncio to the Dominican Republic as well as Apostolic Delegate to Puerto Rico from 2001-2008. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the well-established National Catholic Bioethics Center and serves as the chairman of the Communications Committee for the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington D.C. He is also the current supreme chaplain of the Knights of Columbus.